Monday, June 2, 2014

Old Bike, New Twist

So...I thought I was totally committed to the recumbent cycling lifestyle.  Then we weighed DH's Giro.  The results, with water, were not encouraging.  We estimate my Giro, which is slightly heavier due to different components, to shy in at close to 50# with 150oz water onboard.  That's a LOT of weight to spin up hills.  Now, it does make for a nice run downhill--that physics thing about mass in motion etc--but it does make for a bit of a pig uphill.  And lets face it, if you are thinking of doing LONG'ish rides (60+miles), the weight does become a factor, as it slows me down.  And in Texas heat, I would rather spend 6hrs on the bike than 8hrs if you know what I mean.

Thus began an experiment.  I borrowed stole Monkey1's road bike (traditional bike frame) as it is essentially my size.  I took it out on a couple rides, to see what I could do, and how much it hurt, and where.  Well, apart from the expected sensitivities in the nether regions (not acclimated to a DF seat quite yet) the other aches and pains were not so bad.  The hands and elbow felt the difference, but for 20-30mi, it seemed quite manageable.  Oh, and I was faster on it.  Faster is better.

So I told DH that I wanted to look for a used road bike--more for the shorter training rides, and a chance to keep up with the Monkeys, especially on the hills.  We were fortunately able to find a really nice older Specialized Roubaix for a nice price here in DFW. 
A 2007 alloy framed Specialized Roubaix, Shimano 105 equipped, 10spd drivetrain.  Carbon seat stays and fork, in a 52cm.  It has the Specialized Zertz Inserts in the stays and fork, but my engineer-husband says they are more marketing ploy than functional dampers.  This doesn't surprise me, but I will say this, the bike rides more comfortably than my former beloved Masi Gran Corsa with Reynolds 531.  And that's saying something!

I will be adding a set of Profile Design Aerobars to the bike--not for speed, but for a chance to get off my hands totally and rest on my elbows/forearms.  I used them in the past, and they really do help. 

It's fun being back on a DF bike.  I did 22 miles on it Saturday, and 32 miles yesterday.  It's been over a decade since I rode that far on a DF!  (I've been exclusively recumbent since 2011, and have lots of bent miles.)  I still want a Schlitter Encore, and will likely get one late in the year, after DH gets his.  But until then, I plan to ride both the Giro, and the Roubaix.  Maybe the 'cross training' in riding styles will make me a stronger rider.


  1. I'll be honest, I don't understand anything about bicycles but I do understand the joy of riding a bike. When I was a kid, and before I had a street legal motorcycle, I used to ride my bike everywhere around my little town of Titusville, Florida. I felt so free. Now I only do motors. Those where happy days. It's pleasing to know that you're making happy memories too. Ride Safe ~:)

  2. Nice bike. I have GOT to get out for some more rides. Happily we're done with remodeling for the Summer. The kids will be here in a few weeks and I'm pretty sure I can find an excuse for a nice ride.

  3. Well congrats on your new bike! That's exciting.


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